You may recall the movie theater that wanted to build in downtown Pomona, announced in 2016, followed by a contract with the city in 2018. Nothing’s happened in the 17 months since, leading many to assume the proposal is dead. But it’s not. I provide an update and explain the delays in Sunday’s column. By the way, “popping” in the headline was meant as a subtle pun involving popcorn and theaters, but it’s probably so subtle as to be more puzzling than anything. Ehh, I tried.
Two Pomona columns in a row? Yes, as I write about the reality series “Live PD” filming weekly in Pomona, the police chief’s impending retirement and this week’s council meeting in Friday’s column. But I toss in a Rancho Cucamonga vignette at the end.
I returned to the Pomona Council Chambers for the first time in 16 months to observe Monday’s City Council meeting, where a tempestuous issue, about a mural in a park, was resolved, at least for now. I write about that in Wednesday’s column.
Jon Provost returned to his childhood home in Pomona for dedication of the newly renovated (and branded) Lassie House. Yours truly returned too. I also have some Culture Corner items and news that “The Purge 5” filmed in Ontario as well as Pomona. All that is in Friday’s column. Above, Provost is greeted by homeowner Ray Adamyk. Note the box of dog treats in foreground — and the collies in the front row.
An event in Pomona on Saturday will be devoted to the legacy of the Mexican Players, who performed at Padua Hills Theatre from 1931 to 1974, making it the longest-running Mexican American theater in the nation. As legacies go, though, it’s a complicated one, which I try to unpack in Friday’s column. It’s a historical/cultural subject I’ve avoided for years, and we’ll see from the response if I should have avoided it a while longer. Above, a Mexican Players promotional photo, provided by the Historical Society of Pomona Valley, the event organizer.
Have you ever taken the Sky Ride at the LA County Fair? I hadn’t, despite years of thinking that I ought to; fear of heights was a big reason. But finally I rode it. Watching the ground drop away was slightly terrifying, but the view was great. I ride about the Sky Write, I mean, I write about the Sky Ride in Wednesday’s column.
One tidbit I couldn’t squeeze in abbreviated form into Friday’s column on the fair gets a longer treatment in Sunday’s, as I highlight the coincidence of asking if there was any Ritchie Valens tie-in at the fair (Valens played there in 1958) and then stumbling across one. That item doubles as a mini-profile of a musician and his wife who perform at the fair. That’s followed by a few Culture Corner items and a Valley Vignette. To steal from a Valens song title: Come on, let’s go…to my Sunday column!
I visited the LA County Fair on Wednesday for the first time this season to take a walk around and see some sights. I focused on the LA Pop Architecture show on the hill, but also stopped at a vegan food stand and the Millard Sheets Art Center. That’s all part of Friday’s column.
It was a fruitful visit that will result in a column item or two on Sunday and possibly a full column next Wednesday. Above, the trippy art piece “Emergence.” Stand in front of it and the elements might appear in motion.
Five fountains were installed by Pomona in 1962 as part of the 2nd Street makeover for a pedestrian mall, and four have survived. (The fifth, at Thomas and 2nd, was removed circa 1999 to make way for the Thomas Street Plaza.) All have art by prominent local artists thanks to Millard Sheets, the artist, teacher and designer who laid out the pedestrian mall and wanted to add beauty to people’s lives.
Here’s one of the fountains, produced by mosaic artists Jean and Arthur Ames and featuring the Goddess Pomona. It’s at 409 W. 2nd St., north side of the street.
City Hall is requesting proposals to clean and repair missing or broken elements of the four fountains at a cost of up to $230,000 total, as my colleague Liset Marquez recently reported. It’ll be nice to see them get some TLC.
This post has been updated to reflect the fifth fountain.
A panel last weekend at the School of Arts and Enterprise in downtown Pomona for the Arts Colony’s 25th anniversary was a chance for participants to tell stories about the last quarter century, but also about the pre-Arts Colony days, when downtown was a kind of no-man’s-land. I share some of those stories, with some follow-up questions, in Friday’s column. Above from left, Joshua Swodeck, Ed Tessier, Bill Moore, Phil Graffham, Marci Swett, Rebecca Hamm, Chris Toovey and Joy McAlister.